Aznar, droit au but !
Many players have helped develop Olympique de Marseille’s fingerprints. But some more than others. This is the case of Emmanuel Aznar (1936/1952). "Manu" scored 91 goals in the first division with Marseille, which makes Aznar the fourth highest scorer in the history of OM in D1 behind Jean-Pierre Papin (134), Josip Skoblar ( 151) and Gunnar Andersson (170).
Born on 23 December, 1915 in Sidi-bel-Abbès, Algeria, Emmanuel Aznar made his first career appearance with hometown club, SC Bel-Abbès. In 1936, he left North Africa and joined Olympique de Marseille. His debut was complicated, however, as Aznar scored only one goal in his first 13 matches in blue and white. He then won the championship of France in 1937 and in 1948 with Marseille and was also crowned French champion of the unoccupied zone in 1941.
BEST SCORER OF OM IN 1938/39
Renowned for his very accurate shooting ability, he turned out to be OM's top scorer in the league for the 1938-1939 season, scoring 16 goals. He also won two editions of the Coupe de France in 1938 and 1943 with Olympique de Marseille. He scored the winning goal in the final against FC Metz on 8 May, 1938 (2-1 ap) and scored a brace against Bordeaux on 22 May, 1943 (4-0). He was also a finalist against the Racing Club de Paris in 1940 with OM, a game in which he scored a goal (2-1).
Aznar showed all his striker skills mainly during the war period. He scored five goals during the Marseille offensive in the Coupe de France semi-finals on 7 April, 1940 against Lens (9-1). On 6 October, 1942, during the huge victory of the Phocaeans against Avignon (20-2), Emmanuel Aznar scored nine goals!
45 GOALS IN 30 GAMES
During the 1942-1943 season, the French international (1 selection, 1 goal) was also OM's top scorer, finishing the season with 45 goals in 30 championship games! That's almost half of the total number of goals scored by OM that season in D1 (100). Very opportunistic, Aznar remains today one of the best scorers in the history of OM in the Coupe de France (24 goals). During his Olympien career, "Manu" played 154 first division matches and 205 matches in all competitions (152 goals in all competitions).
After his career ended, Emmanuel Aznar went on to own several shoe stores in Marseille but he never hung up his cleats. He played every Sunday morning. But on 4 October, 1970, at the age of 54, he died in Marseille on a football field during a match between veterans; he was the victim of an aneurysm rupture. He died taking part in his passion, leaving behind an undeniable path in the great history of Olympique Marseille.